Secretarial: The Temp: Two faces are the perfect accessory

`The Temp', is published by Century/Arrow on 7 October, price pounds 5.99

THE FLOWER bill has come in and the shouting has started. Mandy has gone from desk to desk, saying: "Why did you send flowers to that bitch at Bride and Household Digest? You think Luis is going to pay for them after what she said about his spring collection? Are you mad?" Or: "Roses for Suzie Rhinestone, lilies for Mickey Mann! Can't you remember anything? Do I have to do everything around here myself?" Or: "Why are these dated two days after the show?" People are replying: "No, but I'm going to put it on the Pink and Plush account. She was raving about their see-through ra-ras on Tuesday and I thought I'd make sure." Or: "Sorry, Mandy. The roses were for Suzie's assistant, actually." And: "Those were the congratulations ones after the write-up in The Times. The after-show ones are here, look."

London Fashion Week may be over for you, if you ever cared, but in the PR world the mopping-up operation is in full swing. Fashion PRs are a breed apart - shallow, and so caught up in their own image they haven't noticed that pink hair and yellow Lycra really, really don't go with 45- year-old skin.

Mandy is on the phone now. "Jean-Claude?" she says, "Jean-Claude, darling, it's Mandy from Pookie Publicity. We met on Tuesday. Mmm. Wonderful, darling, simply wonderful. I couldn't get over how clever you'd been. Now, listen, my love, I was just wondering if you were happy with the job Vasella is doing for you. Well, I couldn't help but notice that she'd completely failed to keep the split crotch on the PVC hipsters out of the press. Well, I never criticise my colleagues. She's one of my best friends, but I can't help wondering if she's not doing a bit too much of the old, you know, darling," and she sniffs, pointedly.

Behind me, Leezy is on the phone to a journalist. "Of course we don't mind, darling. You have to say what you think, obviously. But Tricia was in floods for days and we wondered if maybe we could send you some of the new collection to try to change your mind. She's doing some wonderful handbags in leopard-print bamboo."

"You would?" asks Mandy, "Well, Jean-Claude, we'd be glad to help, sweetie. Not a word to Vasella, of course. Mwaah, mwaah," she blows kisses into the receiver; "missing you already." She hangs up then picks up an incoming call from the other side of the room. "Victor, darling! My favourite client! Oh, of course I wouldn't just say that. So how do you feel, my love? Aren't you proud of yourself? By far the best show of the season... I think I've already got you a profile in Vogue, darling. Vogue! Can you imagine?"

Leezy continues: "No, well, of course, you're one of my favourite writers, and we're always delighted by any support you give us..."

Mandy has gone all quiet and cold. "Oh, she did, did she? And you believed that? Well. Obviously I can't stop you, but I think you ought to know that not even God himself could have stopped the reviews you got for your pointless collection. Fashion? Bin-liners, more like!"

And with that, each hangs up, and the word "Bitch!" spits from their mouths like olive stones. "Bloody journalists," snarls Leezy, then, "Mands! What happened?"

"That bitch Vasella just poached Victor right out from under my nose! Rang him and suggested I wasn't doing my job properly, and he believed her!"

"The cheek!" Leezy cries. "Bitch," cries Mandy. And they both pick up the phone.

Arts and Entertainment

Film Leonardo DiCaprio hunts Tom Hardy

Arts and Entertainment
And now for something completely different: the ‘Sin City’ episode of ‘Casualty’
TV
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

    US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

    Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
    VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

    'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

    VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
    Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

    Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
    The male menopause and intimations of mortality

    Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

    So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
    Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

    'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

    Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
    Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

    Bettany Hughes interview

    The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
    Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

    Art of the state

    Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
    Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

    Vegetarian food gets a makeover

    Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
    The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

    The haunting of Shirley Jackson

    Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
    Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

    Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

    These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
    Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

    Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

    A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
    Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

    Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

    Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
    HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

    The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

    Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
    Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

    'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

    Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
    Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

    The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

    Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen